How many gods have we driven into the darkness, where they plot a course back into the brain's smoke-gray folds, sick with madness from this carbon-driven world? The Dictionary of Ancient Gods has 525 tightly-packed pages of deified names, with hidden leaves, rosettes, and whorls of napier nights dark as a northern winter's sky.

How many creations have been subsumed by our myths? Why can't the spirit of God be a fish, a seal, or even a glacier? So much wisdom is an organized being, with a head or névé through which it gulps snow and rock debris, a head well separated from the rest of its body by the rimage, then an enormous stomach in which snow is transformed into ice, a stomach riddled with crevasses and internal passages for expelling excess water; and in the lower portion it secretes its wastes in the form of moraine. Its life is not passed on, but dies in a blizzard of dogma and greed. Still, we have Inuit iviutik (song duels), the Nordic Codex Regius, and modern writers like Largerkvist, Hansan, Vesaas, Laxness, Jacobsen....a Medicine Wheel that spells out layers of who we continue to be—


North my love north
where the earth stands firm
against the continental drift
and whirls the stars about us
like a frozen wheel of fire.